There is perhaps no more perilous ground for anyone with the least bit of sensibility than the summer concert. Exposed to the elements and at the liberty of beer lines and confounding fellow concertgoers, it’s difficult to find a balance between comfort, utility, and style while still enjoying the music and it’s environs. The McCarren Park Pool concert series adds a specific twist to this volatile mix, being that they take place in the epicenter of clichéd hipsterdom, for better or for worse. What follows is a super official DO’s and DON’Ts list for traversing the emptied pool with as much class as Lorimer and Driggs allows.
DO get there before 5pm. The line often extends around the block and moves at a glacial pace. Brunch at Lodge, avoid Enids, on the early side (dangerous 2 for 1 Bloody Marys), then make the short walk over to the Pool.
DON’T wear your Wayfarers. We all own a pair and rightfully so. They’re a classic that was good enough for JFK and Muhammad Ali. Unfortunately, over 90% of Pool attendees agree, dust off those Moscots or Persols. Karen Walker and Chronicles of Never also have great, edgier tortoise-shell interpretations of classic shade silhouettes.
DO leave the fedora at home. Reason? Again, you don’t want to get lost in the sea of Ray-Ban/fedora clones.
DON’T forget to shave. Mix it up and be one of six people without an artfully disheveled 5 o’clock shadow.
DO wear a collared, button-up shirt. Light cotton or chambray, long or short-sleeved, is actually cooler (temperature) than a tee, and avoids tacky graphical territory of the vintage tee. Steven Alan, Obedient Sons, or A.P.C. will all do the trick nicely. But J.Crew is nothing to be ashamed of.
DON’T wear denim. No matter how high you cuff yours. There’s no shade in the Pool, after an hour that denim might as well be grafted to your skin. Opt for a tailored khaki or navy short, hitting just above the knee, with slim pockets. Think the opposite of camo cargo shorts.
DO wear canvas sneakers. Any color will do well here, a clean, white Tretorn or a red Era Vans will both do a good job, rain or shine. If leather is your thing, think light, a la Topsider.
DON’T wear flip-flops. There is no reason to show your toes within the city limits of New York. Spilled beers, rain, and standing mystery water might also encourage a closed-toe policy. —JARED FLINT